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Live on CNN: John Fetterman Takes Vulgar Shot at Rand Paul, Throws Tantrum for Him Holding Up Ukraine Aid

live-on-cnn:-john-fetterman-takes-vulgar-shot-at-rand-paul,-throws-tantrum-for-him-holding-up-ukraine-aid
Live on CNN: John Fetterman Takes Vulgar Shot at Rand Paul, Throws Tantrum for Him Holding Up Ukraine Aid

Commentary

 By Michael Schwarz  February 13, 2024 at 5:37pm

Americans do not live in a democracy. Nor do we live in a constitutional republic. With each passing day, we learn in real time that our elected officials both constitute and serve a ruling oligarchy.

See, for instance, the vulgar, unfiltered (and thus authentic) indignation expressed by Democratic Sen. John Fetterman of Pennsylvania toward a colleague, Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, who had the audacity to filibuster a gargantuan spending bill aimed primarily at funding Ukraine’s interminable war with Russia.

“We’re only here because of just one pr***,” Fetterman told a CNN reporter in a 21-second clip posted Tuesday to the social media platform X.

Evidently, Fetterman resented having to go to work. In fact, while he spoke live to CNN, he kept looking at his phone as if distracted. Perhaps he had better things to do.

“And he decides that the rest of all of our schedules and our lives and — and holding up this bill to the — getting to the House — for all of this aid — it’s incredibly frustrating. And there’s no work being done. It’s just bad performance art,” Fetterman said.

The Pennsylvania senator put the word “work” in air quotes as he spoke. He also looked at his phone at least seven different times in 21 seconds.

Above all, however, he seemed irritated over the disruption to his life and schedule. Sending more money to Ukraine, he implied, should not require his close attention.

Apparently, we should not expect senators to guard Americans’ actual interests. More on this in a moment.

Readers may view the full Fetterman clip below.

WARNING: The following video contains language some readers may find offensive.

“We’re only here because of just one prick … It’s incredibly frustrating. And there’s no work being done. It’s just bad performance art.”

— Sen. John Fetterman (D-PA) hits Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) for holding up the $95B foreign aid package until it passed the Senate early Tuesday pic.twitter.com/2cIzDhu2MO

— The Recount (@therecount) February 13, 2024

On Tuesday morning, the Senate voted to approve a $95 billion foreign-aid package that included $60.1 billion for Ukraine. Twenty-two Republicans joined 48 Democrats in supporting the bill. Only 29 senators voted against it.

Meanwhile, Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson already has signaled that the House will not vote on a foreign-aid bill that does not include money for meaningful U.S. border security.

Paul and a handful of conservative senators delayed the bill’s passage by engaging in a talking filibuster. That tactic — the source of Fetterman’s inconvenience and object of his wrath — falls within Senate rules.

In fact, Paul seemed to revel in the knowledge that his maneuver would irritate the Senate’s Ukraine-first, America-last warmongers.

“The reason for the talking filibuster is not that we’re going to win. They have the votes to win,” Paul said according to The American Conservative.

“We’re causing them to ultimately expend seven days. We’ve made them be here on the weekend if they want to take our money and ship it to another country. The punishment we can inflict is we keep them here on the weekend; we keep them from campaigning; we keep them from fundraising,” he added.

Do you think Rand Paul did the right thing?

Judging by his visible annoyance, Fetterman felt the punishment.

In a larger sense, however, few punishments would qualify as too strong for the 70 senators who supported this bill.

If that sounds like hyperbole, then try conducting the following imaginary experiment:

First, replace all sitting U.S. senators with 100 random Americans. And make the selection truly random — a cross-section of the United States. These people, of course, will have run no campaigns and owe no political favors. The foreign-policy establishment will not have sunk its tentacles into them.

Then, ask those 100 new senators if they would vote to send Ukraine another $60.1 billion.

If you cannot imagine a scenario in which 100 random Americans would vote as their elected officials have, then the only plausible conclusion is that those elected officials do not represent Americans, in which case you live in neither a democracy nor a constitutional republic but an oligarchy.

And the oligarchs apparently have better things to do than show up for work. Just ask Fetterman.


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Michael Schwarz holds a Ph.D. in History and has taught at multiple colleges and universities. He has published one book and numerous essays on Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and the Early U.S. Republic. He loves dogs, baseball, and freedom. After meandering spiritually through most of early adulthood, he has rediscovered his faith in midlife and is eager to continue learning about it from the great Christian thinkers.

Michael Schwarz holds a Ph.D. in History and has taught at multiple colleges and universities. He has published one book and numerous essays on Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and the Early U.S. Republic. He loves dogs, baseball, and freedom. After meandering spiritually through most of early adulthood, he has rediscovered his faith in midlife and is eager to continue learning about it from the great Christian thinkers.

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